Italy General Transportation Strike: Sept. 6, 2011

Posted on September 6, 2011


If you’re a student abroad in Italy, today’s General Transportation Strike probably won’t be affecting your travel plans. For most Italians, these strikes are not a big deal, but for American students unaccustomed to transportation strikes, here’s the rundown:

In case you’re traveling this weekend, you may want to do some research to make sure you can still get where you want to go.

Today’s strike was announced on the Ministry of Transportation’s website. Here’s a link with Google translate to English embedded.

The strike today, Sept. 6, will last eight hours. It will affect:

Air and Plane Transportation from 10 a.m. to 18:00 (6 p.m.)

FS (train) from 9:01 a.m. to 17:00 (5 p.m.)

TPL (airlines) will last 8 hours, but vary locally.

and affecting ports, there will be an 8 hour delay on the departure of ships.

If you aren’t familiar with strikes in Italy, you should know this: they are peaceful demonstrations of political beliefs. Italy often steps up the police presence in the streets to ensure that everyone stays safe.

The strikes are also planned in advance so that travelers can make their plans accordingly. Today’s strike was called by CGIL, Italy’s largest union, and it’s in protest of  Silvio Burlsosconi’s efforts to gain parliamentary backing for austerity measures. Check out this article by the Guardian to learn more.

So what happens if a strike affects your travel plans?

If you already have a ticket, the airlines and bus agencies will book you transportation on the next available plane or train out. Ryanair rarely stops running flights because of a transportation strike, so if you’ve booked a budget ticket don’t worry.

In addition to today’s strikes, here are more strikes that will take place through September:

Sept. 15: Meridiana flight workers will strike from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sept. 15.

Sept. 17: Trenitalia will strike for 24 hours from 9 Sept. 17 to Sept. 18.

Sept. 19: Local transportation will strike for at least four hours, with times varying locally.

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